In a very small and local ceremony, Sivakatirswami and Sadhaka Tejadevanatha join with several other island clergy to bless the opening of a small bridge over the Kapaa stream in the Hauula Valley on the north side of Kapaa town.
The engineer on this project is Venkatesan Kuppusamy who is a county employee. He is now a Kauai resident, originally from Chennai, who comes to the temple regularly to worship, is helping Yoginathaswami with our construction plans and invited the monks to join him for the opening of the renovated bridge.
This bridge provide passage for a small group of residents in this valley. It also is the main road to Kauai’s famed Valley House Estate, which is a large acreage passed down from the old sugar cane days and a favorite spot for movie makers to shoot their Hawaii scenes.
The undershoring of this bridge had washed out making it impassable. Mayor Bernard Carvalho was on hand to praise Kuppusamy for his engineering skills and the team which reformed supports for the bridge which also provided three huge channels which could take all the water even in high flood times.
Though it was a small project the Mayor was proud that this local team was able to do the job in 2 months and for only $400,000.00. This is remarkable when you think that similar civil projects are often outsourced to large companies, can easily hit the $2 million mark and “go on for years” without ever being finished.
The Catholic priest said a prayer, our monks invoked Lord Ganesha and did a small arati and broke a coconut and two Hawaii Christians, said prayers from the Hawaii, Christian Bible.
And then the mayor cut a symbolic ribbon to open the renovated bridge.
It was an interesting multi-faith group that did the blessing. On the right, the young and bright Father Peter Miti from Zambia, who has been on Kauai only for one year. In the middle, from the local Hawaiian Christian Church, Rev. Jade Battad and Rev. Sandy Keale.
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Bodhinatha's Latest Upadeshas: "The Difference in Practice of Theism and Monism" (September 3, 2014)
During a puja we're in Theism, to receive the blessings of the Deity. After a puja we can go within our self in meditation, giving up the idea of an external Deity, Monism. Monistic Theism: Advaita Ishvaravada. Advaita means the Monism; Ishvara means the Theism.
In Shum we use two words that relate to that: shumif and dimfi. First, perfect your Theism. Then become a monist. That's called Saiva Siddhanta; one leads to the other.